I started thinking about how much my political view of the world has changed in the last ten years or so. It’s been a gradual thing, like getting older. You don’t realize you’re getting old until, bang, you can’t move as fast as you used to.
It isn’t so much that my political philosopy has changed, it is more of a case that everyone else’s has. I always considered myself as a right tilting republican, not a radical republican, not ultra-conservative, just on the right side of the politcal spectrum. But after the 2012 election, when the right became just a little to “out-there” for my taste, I pretty much gave up on politics.
I used to write two, mostly political blogs, I wrote for various conservative outlets, I even participated in a political campaign for a republican candidate for congress. Now, until the last week at least, I haven’t hardly watched or read anything political. Just decided to bury my head in the sand. I figured there just wasn’t any room out there for a dinosaur like me.
But lately I have been rethinking things. I have seen a few things that have bothered me and since I have always enjoyed the opinion writing side of things, I thought I would try to start opining again. The way I look at it is someone needs to be in the middle, if that is even possible. Before I use to piss off one side of the spectrum more than the other. Now, I’ll probably piss off both sides.
So where to start? I came across an article on the NPR website today. Yes you read that right, the NPR website. It was an article about banning books. It talks about how schools are having problems keeping up with the amount of banned books, books being banned as a result of concentrated efforts by various groups. These books deal with subjects such as LGBTQ+, racial, and minority religious issues. Here is a link to the study. “Banned in the USA”
It wasn’t so long ago that I would have been all up in arms over this, on the banning side. I would have said things like “Schools shouldn’t be allowed to force their leftist agendas on our students.” But are they? As parents, we have the right to “Just say no to books we don’t want our children to read.” (My apologies to Nancy Reagan) Just because they are in the schools, doesn’t me we have to let them read them. Parents have the right to reveiw the curriculums that schools have under federal law. They can make the decision on whether or not schools should use these books or not. Banning them outright is wrong.
What happened when they tried to ban alcohol? Marijuana? Disco? People found ways to get it. The same could happen here. Wouldn’t it be better if the parents actually read the books, found out what is in them, and then had discussions with their children about the subject matter? I haven’t read any of the banned books, although I might. Why? Maybe I’ll learn something. Maybe it might even cause me to have stronger opinions on whether or not these books are suitable for classroom reading. Right now, I have no idea.
At the risk of making this post overly long, I will say this. As part of my semi-retirement I have spent quite some time walking though the woods. I like to see what is out there. Through learning about some of the things I have found, I have really opened my eyes about the history of this country, and how we came to be. I have learned about how we have treated others, how we have tried to erase whole cultures from our histories. We must not let these things happen again.
Finally, I am going to list the top five books that are being banned. I will link them to my Amazon store. If you decide to buy one to see just how bad they might be, I will get a small percentage of the price and this will be used to fund my soon to be retirement.
- Gender Queer: A Memoir by Maia Kobabe
- All Boys Aren’t Blue by George M. Johnson
- Out of Darkness by Ashley Hope Pérez
- The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
- The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
I’ll be picking one for myself to read and will let you know what I think in a future post. And as always feel free to like, share, subscribe, and comment. Just be civil or you’re comments will not be published.